Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Modena (anc. Mutina), a town of north Italy, capital of the former duchy of the same name, 23 miles N.W. of Bologna by rail. It is situated on a broad plain between the Panaro and Secchia, which are here joined by a canal. The cathedral, a Romanesque building, with a handsome facade and a lofty campanile, was begun in 1099. The ducal palace - a noble pile erected in the 17th century, with splendid courts surrounded by colonnades - contains a library of 90,000 volumes and 3,000 MSS., a gallery of paintings, and many interesting monuments of antiquity. The university was founded in 1678. Leather and silk goods are manufactured. The origin of Modena dates back to the days of the ancient Etruscans, from whom it was conquered by the Gauls, before passing into the hands of the Romans. It was made the capital of a county by Charlemagne, and was ruled by the family of Este from the 13th century to their final expulsion in 1860. Since that date it has formed part of the kingdom of Italy.